Chinese words and concepts can seem so… Chinese. That is to say, hard to unlock and understand without the right frame of reference. So, what is this Qi anyway, and how on earth do you pronounce it?
Qi (氣), pronounced ‘chee’, is as its simplest explanation, energy. But it’s actually a lot more than that. Qi IS energy, but it can also condense and solidify into solid objects. In this second context, think of it like matter. In the first context, a good way to understand it and how it works in your body is as bioelectric energy. Think of it this way- Qi is like a motive force. It propels all of the metabolic actions in your body, beating your heart, inflating and deflating your lungs, digesting your food. It’s that little burst of energy that helps an egg erupt from an ovarian follicle (or grow in that follicle, for that matter), it propels the egg down the fallopian tube, helps propel the sperm towards it and fertilize it, helps it grow into an embryo, and helps it implant in the uterus. All of these things rely on Qi to happen.
Let’s take a look at the Chinese character for it. It tells us a lot to help us understand Qi. The bottom part (米) is the character for rice. The top part (气) represents the steam rising from the pot as the rice is cooking. Taken as a whole, Qi represents the energy needed to transform that rice from dry grains into something cooked and ready to eat.
When we understand what Qi is, we can start to understand its importance for our health and our fertility. We are such complex biological creatures that rely on thousand of complex interactions to take place in order for life to exist, and at the base of all of those interactions, Qi is the driving force. Subscribe for my next blog post which is all about understanding Qigong Meditation and your fertility!